Sports

Golovkin stops Murray to keep middleweight belts

Monte Carlo, Monaco (SportsNetwork.com) - WBA, IBO and interim WBC middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin successfully defended his titles Saturday with an 11th-round technical knockout of Martin Murray.

Referee Luis Pabon halted the fight at 2:10 of the 11th round to give the undefeated Golovkin (32-0, 29 KO) his 19th consecutive win via knockout.

Murray (29-2) was nearly able to go the distance despite receiving substantial punishment from Golovkin, who floored the British challenger twice in the fourth round and again near the end of the 10th.

Golovkin captured the interim WBC middleweight crown with a second-round KO of Marco Antonio Rubio in October. The 32-year-old has held the WBA belt since 2010 and won the IBO title a year later.

On the undercard, Hekkie Butler (28-1) retained his WBA minimumweight title with a unanimous decision over Jesus Silvestre. The native South African was ahead 115-112 on two of the three scorecards and 117-110 on the other.